According to a study published by the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), empowerment-based interventions can benefit women in recovery from substance use disorders (SUDs). Empowerment involves gaining confidence, particularly in one’s self and one’s life.
Although women’s use of drugs and alcohol is statistically less than men, women report more problems with substance use and experience more health-related consequences than men. Women are at a higher risk than men for developing SUDs if they have a history of family substance abuse, trauma, or a psychological disorder.
Barriers to Recovery
Unfortunately, few women needing treatment for SUDs actually receive that treatment. Women face unique barriers to entering treatment due to a lack of resources addressing childcare, housing, economic barriers, co-occurring psychological disorders, histories of trauma, and deficient social support from a significant other, friends, or family. Social stigmas experienced by women make maintaining sobriety even more difficult during and after treatment.
Empowerment is Imperative for Recovery
There are three features of psychological empowerment:
- Interpersonal empowerment represents one’s sense of self-perception, self-worth, competence, perceived control, and personal control.
- Interactional empowerment refers to people’s self-awareness, relations with their communities, awareness of resources, and skill development.
- Behavioral empowerment involves taking action through community participation and other organized activities.
The findings of multiple studies have led to the development of gender-specific treatment programs that empower women by increasing self-esteem, self-worth and self-efficacy. Treatment focused on the three features of psychological empowerment allows health care professionals to directly target the barriers to recovery that women face. Aftercare programs have been made available as a resource following treatment, providing continued empowerment support during the transition into independent living.
Looking for Help?
Women face many challenges on the road to recovery due to limited resources for childcare, housing, and social support. Promoting recovery by identifying specific factors that empower women and providing knowledge of available resources aids the treatment and recovery process. At Fort Behavioral Health, we understand that the barriers to recovery are different for everyone. We are committed to identifying these barriers on an individual basis as we work with you to create a treatment plan that best serves you and your long-term sobriety. If you or someone you know is struggling with an addiction to drugs or alcohol, call us today at 844.332.1807.